Pep Guardiola knew what he was getting when he sanctioned Bayern Munich’s purchase of Thiago Alcantara from FC Barcelona last summer.
Alcantara, 22, demonstrated his skills to the rest of the world Wednesday by scoring his first league goal for Bayern Munich in spectacularly dramatic fashion.
The tense Bundesliga (German first division) clash between Bayern Munich and VfB Stuttgart was tied at 1-1 in the 93rd minute when Bayern fullback Rafinha floated a pass into the Stuttgart penalty area toward Alcantara.
Alcantara jumped, twisted his body and performed a perfect scissor-kick, which sent the ball past diving goalkeeper Sven Ulreich into the goal.
Alcantara’s game-winning strike helped Bayern stretch its Bundesliga lead over second place Bayer Leverkusen to 13 points with 16 games remaining. Bayern’s successful title defense seems like a forgone conclusion at this point.
Some criticized Alcantara’s ?25 million ($33 million) switch from Barcelona, as he had failed to earn regular playing time at his boyhood club. But Bayern head coach Guardiola had faith in Alcantara’s abilities, having worked with the young midfielder during his tenure as Barcelona’s head coach. That personal relationship convinced Alcantara to take his talents to Germany instead of staying in Spain or moving to Manchester United.
Alcantara’s Bayern career stuttered at the outset, as an ankle injury he suffered in his second game sidelined him for two months. Alcantara had scored just one goal for Bayern before Wednesday. Pay attention, kids. This is how you double down.
See Alcantara’s scissor-kick goal below.